Welcome to a mind-bending journey through the intricate corridors of human transformation! Change, that elusive chameleon of our existence, has intrigued, baffled, and propelled us throughout the ages. Whether we’re embracing it with open arms or clinging desperately to the familiar, the psychology of change is a complex dance between our conscious intentions and the subtle workings of our subconscious mind. As individuals can find comfort and security in routine, as soon as this is disrupted, we can experience psychological and physical changes, both negative and positive. Change became something we all had to combat over the last 24 months, with constant, and everchanging information surrounding the pandemic.
In this blog, we embark on a discerning journey to unravel the enigmatic world of transformation, delving into the cognitive intricacies, the undercurrents of resistance, and the pivotal moments of breakthrough. Prepare to embark on a scholarly expedition, as we unveil the profound understanding that change is not merely an abstract concept but a captivating narrative scripted in the language of our cognition, emotions, and actions. Welcome to the realm of the psychology of change, a profound journey that invites the intellect and the soul to contemplate the profound forces at play in our ever-evolving existence.
Many individuals try their best to avoid change, but change will eventually always catch up. Research shows that different personalities can influence how change affects our mental health. This means, that if you are comfortable in a routine, change can be more stressful. If you seek spontaneity, change is more easily welcomed. There is an influx of emotions can we feel when change comes into play; excitement, overwhelmed, frightened, stress, anxiety, joy. There is no right emotion when dealing with change.
Some symptoms of stress and anxiety from change can include:
Learning how to cope with change, will lower our risk for anxiety and depression.
We tend to enjoy change when it’s something we can control. This includes buying new clothes or changing our home/room. Our mindset in those moments invite feelings of joy and excitement. However, it is about how we deal with those changes that are unexcepted and leave a sour taste in our mouth. Being able to deal with all different types of change, is called resilience. Practicing different ways of thinking can build your ability to deal with change and help you create a life that is adaptive to the sour, unexpected change.
Let’s break down some of the best strategies for increasing your level of resilience and coping with change:
Self-care is any form of care that makes us feel better. Life changes can bring in grief, sadness, and stress. Setting time apart for your self-care is crucial to acknowledging how you feel, but still doing something to better your overall wellness. Self-care can be seeking support from friends and family, a skin-care routine, or even just a quick a daily walk.
In times of change, it’s easy for our brain to go straight to the worst possible scenario. Pausing to take time to assess your thought may reveal that your instinctive response may not always be the most rational. Finding a way to shift these thoughts, will build your resilience. Look outside, you can see the world continues to move. Take time to yourself, practice deep breathing, mindfulness, and feel more in control of your thoughts.
Change can cause us to overthink and a factor of this is thinking into our past, and future. We can sit and live in the future, and worry about what mistakes we will make, that may affect that future – but nothing healthy will come from that mindset. We need to mindfully focus on living in the present, actively pay attention to how we feel and how we respond to chapters of change..
Change can bring into perspective what our priorities are. Resilience means that we can see change as an opportunity, rather than something we should fear. If we lost our job, did we want that career, or is there something we are more passionate about? How do we want to spend our time here on earth? What really matters to us? What’s draining us? By knowing what you want out of your individual life journey, and focusing on that, we can deal with change more effectively.
Especially following the pandemic, we sometimes don’t have much control about what’s going on around us. We can blame our actions on something, or someone else. However, we can’t control how other people act, but we can control how we act. We can’t control if a situation is out of our control. Look for opportunities to empower yourself and work towards change that feels manageable, then we will become more resilient.
Change can be daunting. How we perceive changes in our lives, is how we let it affect us. Obviously, with any big change in our everyday life, it can be hard to find the silver lining. But, after our initial stress, and negative thoughts, we can work toward changing the narrative we choose to believe.
Fired from your job? A job is coming that is meant for you.
Lost a friend? Someone else is coming to appreciate and cherish you.
Relationship breakdown? You have time to discover yourself now.
This is easier said than done. If we could change the script in our head and work against what we choose to believe, we would all do it. And, most likely be happier for it. It’s the small actions and the belief that it will get better that will push you to become the best version of yourself.
Don’t be fooled – change will still happen, just like the seasons come and go. A new home, friends, environment. Let’s get excited! Be compassionate to ourselves, recognise our feelings, and take proactive steps to nourish ourselves.
Change naturally means uncertainty. This is why, even the best and most exciting change can lead to anxiety.
If you are struggling, with changes major or minor, don’t feel disheartened if you can’t look for the silver lining. Confirmation bias is one of the most common coping mechanisms we use to make sense of the situation. If you’ve lost your job, and you already felt you weren’t enough, we are really going to believe it now!
However, sometimes we do need that extra bit of help. At CBT Professionals, we pride ourselves in therapy that focuses on you and your unique circumstances. Contact us now via telephone or online enquiry via www.cbtprofessionals.com.au to book. Our knowledgeable psychologists and friendly staff can help you through the process of finding the right psychologist for you and help you schedule a convenient appointment time.
Our administration team are here to help here to support you. With 3 convenient locations, in both Brisbane and the Gold Coast, we can help you adapt to change and learn helpful strategies to make you as strong as possible.
Coomera – (07) 5551 0251
Nerang – (07) 5668 3490
Mount Gravatt – (07) 3102 1366
If you, or someone you know, require help, please reach out to organisations like Beyond Blue.
Additionally reach out to these organisations that may be able to help.
(Health Direct, 2020).
If this is an emergency, please contact 000 or visit your local emergency department.
The thumbnail photo is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.
Brennan, D. (2021). What to know about how to deal with change. WebMD Editorial. https://www.webmd.com/mental-health/what-to-know-about-how-to-deal-with-change
Khalid, S. (2020). The Psychology of Major Life Changes. Ampersand. https://ampersandhealth.co.uk/myarthritis/resources/the-psychology-of-major-life-changes/#:~:text=THE%20HUMAN%20RESPONSE%20TO%20CHANGE,is%20sometimes%20more%20easily%20welcomed.
Smith, K. (2020). The Psychology Of Dealing With Change: How to Become Resilient. Psycom. https://www.psycom.net/dealing-with-change